Thank you for your responses.
More info: I listened to the breakers as advised. There is no sizzling sound.
I noticed that all of the warm breakers were labeled AFCI.
Does that give a clue to the problem?
Thank you very much for your help!
You're very welcome. You actually answered your own question when you
noticed they were all AFCI breakers. The answer to this question also made
me realize that an AFCI breaker "stuffed" circuit panel might attract more
bugs and other vermin than a normal panel because it's mostly sealed up and
warm in such areas. The last mouse we had lived in the basement near the
water heater and traveled from there all the way to the kitchen and back
stockpiling all sort of kitchen detritus in the nest. No mice since we got
a little dog, though!
If the panel cover was hot enough to burn your hand, that would indicate
a real problem. It must be fairly new to have arc fault
circuit breakers installed, a type breaker which trips when an
electrical arc is detected in any circuit connected to the breaker.
If you're really worried call your electric company to find out if
a tech for them would come out and check the temp of the panel at
no cost to you. The power company here is really good about that sort of
thing and the fire department (don't dial 911) may have a fire marshal
willing to drop by and assuage your fears after checking the
temp of the panel. The ones I know would rather find out that a citizen
has a problem that needs fixing rather than meeting him outside his
burning house. If it really has you worried, there are electrical
installation and repair companies that will send someone by to check it
for you at no cost as a way to get you as a customer. The honest service
companies are out there, ask around to find someone who will check it
for you. Your peace of mind will let you sleep at night. Be safe. ^_^
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